Tiramisu


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The Perky Kebab is a major tiramisu fan.  Back in our youth I made him a tiramisu for his birthday a couple of times.  Sadly for him, I had never really eaten tiramisu before and, despite best intentions, really didn’t do it justice.  

To his credit, my dear husband-to-be enthusiastically gobbled up my efforts.  But instead of a relatively fluffy egg and cream concoction, I created a solid, over-whipped, cream heavy version.  It was so difficult to extract from the glasses I presented it in that a crowbar would have been of more use than a spoon!

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Thankfully since then I have experienced “proper” tiramisu and realised how surprisingly light, fluffy and wonderful a booze, coffee and cream filled dessert can be.

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So when we had Italian food-loving friends over for dinner, I knew it was time for a tiramisu redo.  Thanks to Felicity Cloake’s excellent recipe in her Guardian column, it was pretty easy to get it right this time round.

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My version of her recipe includes a little more coffee (I clearly dunked my savoiardi biscuits for longer than she did as I managed to used about 400ml coffee to her 100ml!) and swaps the traditional Tia Maria/rum for Cointreau as I enjoy the slight orange hint it lends the dessert.

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It’s the perfect way to end an Italian feast and could also be the answer to your Christmas dessert quandaries.  The more glamorous Italian cousin of the trifle would be a great alternative to a Christmas pudding.

Tiramisu

Serves 8
Adapted from Felicity Cloake’s Perfect Tiramisu

4 eggs, separated
75g caster sugar
500g mascarpone
400ml espresso coffee (or very strong caffetiere coffee)
6 tablespoons Cointreau
20 savoiardi biscuits (or boudoir if unavailable)
Cocoa powder
8 small tumblers/wine glasses/martini glasses/etc

To make:
  1. Whisk three of the egg whites until stiff, then set aside.
  2. Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until pale and voluminous, then whisk in the mascarpone, a little at a time, until smooth and well combined – you don’t want lumps of cheese. Gently fold the three whites into the mascarpone mixture with a large metal spoon, being careful to knock as little air out as possible.
  3. Stir the Cointreau into the coffee and pour into a shallow dish.  Dip each biscuit into the liquid until it is a pale coffee colour, then arrange to cover the bases of your glasses.
  4. Spoon around 3 tablespoons of mascarpone mixture on top of each one, followed by a good sprinkle of cocoa, then repeat the layers, finishing with a layer of the cheese and cocoa.
  5. Cover and refrigerate for at least six hours before serving – you may need to dust with a little more cocoa to make it look respectable.
In advance:

6 hours is the minimum needed to ensure your tiramisu is ultra-delicious, however it will also keep well overnight in the fridge.

 

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